Cuba protests against Czech Foreign Ministry’s grants
Posted: 13 February 2006 09:28 AM   [ Ignore ]
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PRAGUE, Feb 2 (CTK) - Cuban charge d’affaires to the Czech Republic Aymee Hernandez today handed over a protest note to the Czech Foreign Ministry, criticising that the ministry’s grants include support for opponents of Fidel Castro’s regime.

The ministry will allot the grants within its tender for NGOs’ projects in 2006.

The Cuban note says that the tender is just a new provocation of the Czech government and an example of Czech interference in Cuban internal affairs. These activities actually aim to “subvert the institutional order of another country,” claims the Cuban Embassy’s note, released to CTK.

In reaction to the Cuban note, the Czech Foreign Ministry issued a statement, stressing that support for democracy and the protection of human rights are among the major priorities of Czech foreign policy.

“Launching the tender for NGOs’ projects of cooperation in transformation is in harmony with these priorities. The tender is to select Czech NGOs’ projects in support of civic society and a peaceful and democratic development in the target countries,” Richard Krpac from the Foreign Ministry’s press section told CTK.

The protest of the Cuban Embassy has only confirmed the tense Czech-Cuban relations.

The latest incident occurred last week when Cuban authorities detained two Czech women, supermodel Helena Houdova and psychologist Mariana Kroftova, when they were taking photographs of a slum in Havana.

The Czech Foreign Ministry then invited Hernandez to explain the incident, but Czech diplomats did not find her arguments satisfactory and asked for additional information.

The Cuban Embassy in Prague called the visit of both Czech women to Cuba and their planned cooperation with the People in Need humanitarian organisation “another provocation.”

Today’s Cuban protest also reiterates sharp objections to the establishment of the Foreign Ministry’s section in summer 2004 to focus on the fight against totalitarian regimes in cooperation with NGOs.

Hernandez said that this section, which decides on the above mentioned grants as well, is “a department for subversive activities and dirty work in the Third World countries.”

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Posted: 14 February 2006 11:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Cubana, thanks for posting. I am just doing a test reply for internal reasons.

Rob

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